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My Top 10 Mindful Parenting Books
November 26, 2014


When I was a little girl, I would prepare for Thanksgiving by going for my books. I needed lots of chapter books to sustain me through the 4-hour drive to grandma’s house and the return trip.

I’ve always been a big reader, and books have been probably the greatest resource of my life. Opening me up to learning from experiences and teachers that I would otherwise never have access too.

And books have been my greatest resource on the path of mindfulness, self-care, and mindful parenting.

So today, in the spirit of the gratitude of the season, I offer you a list of books that I wish I had read in the first year of my oldest daughter’s life.

So, without further ado, my personal list of greatest mindful parenting resources. I am so grateful for these teachers. I hope that you will appreciate them too.

Hunter’s Top 10 Mindful Parenting Books

  1. PET Parent Effectiveness Training by Dr. Thomas Gordon. This book, by Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Thomas Gordon, was written in 1970 and has sold over 4 million copies for good reason. It’s amazing! It takes us out of the continuum between authoritarian and permissive parenting and offers a beautiful third route. You don’t always have to be zen, but be you. You learn how to listen and communicate with your kids in an honest and effective way. And it teaches the wonderful “No-lose” conflict resolution. It is mindfulness and consciousness in a training manual. Definitely get this book!
  2. consciousThe Conscious Parent by Dr. Shefali Tsabary. THE book for understanding why awakening our own consciousness is essential for mindful parents. I can’t say enough about this book. An excerpt: “It’s no surprise we fail to rune into our children’s essence. How can we listen to them, when so many of us barely listen to ourselves?.” This book encourages us to take care of and tune into ourselves so that we can care for and tune into our kids. Self-acceptance so that we can accept our children. I can’t recommend it enough.
  3. simplicity Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne. This book may have shaped my parenting philosophy more than any other! It makes a studies-based argument that simplicity, rhythm and routine are the important antidote to our fast paced world. Kids need to move at their own rhythm. This book helped me with enormously with my spirited child. He offers real, do-able advice for slowing down and savoring our children’s childhood.
  4. carlaParenting in the Present Moment by Carla Naumburg. Carla gives us Mindful parenting from a real, down-to-earth mama. Without being preachy, she offers advice that actually fits into busy parents schedules. The explanations are clear and she offers simple ways to help get you grounded in what is most important. Awesome book.
  5. freerange Free Range Kids by Lenore Skenazy. This book is the wonderful antidote to our helicopter-parenting, fear based culture. Lenore counters cultural worries with facts and statistics that will open your eyes. This will help you get over irrational fears so that you can give your children more freedom and trust. If you are a worrier, you have toget this book!
  6. becomeBecoming the Parent You Want To Be by Laura Davis. This book really opened my eyes. Totally comprehensive – it covers everything from eating to potty learning, to our own self-care. It invites us to reflect on our own upbringing. It offers many choices and personal stories which are really helpful.
  7. cathy Living What You Want Your Kids To Learn by Cathy C. Adams. Mindful parenting doesn’t have to be daunting! Cathy shares through personal stories in a really accessible way. It’s all about developing self-understanding, and living and parenting from that authentic place. This book is perfect to put by your bedside to read each night.
  8. outofOut of Control by Dr. Shefali Tsabary. The subtitle of this says it all, ” Why disciplining your child doesn’t work…and what will.” In her second book, Dr. Shefali takes The Conscious Parent into the real world with stories from her clinical practice. Loved this book.
  9. peaceful Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids by Dr. Laura Markham. This book shares the science behind why punishment doesn’t work in a really accessible way. Dr. Laura’s teaching is grounded in the knowledge that the best parenting is in our own self-regulation.
  10. plantingPlanting the Seeds by Thich Nhat Hanh and the Plum Village Community – This book has games, stories, and meditations to do with young children. I love these practices! They are beautiful for building peace. But my favorite part of this is the CD that comes with it! The music is a true gem. These songs are beautiful and support support your mindfulness practice as well as your child’s. You will both love listening to it!

I hope that my sharing this list will help share these incredible resources. Each one is truly a great teacher. Down the road, I will be sharing my favorite podcasts and videos too, so stay tuned!

Now it’s your turn.

What are your most-treasured parenting books? Please start the conversation and share in the comments below.

On the eve of this Thanksgiving, I send out much gratitude – not only to these amazing teachers listed above, but also to you.

You are doing the work of becoming more aware. You are helping us collectively be more present for the next generation. I am so grateful for your presence here on this blog, and for each and every time you share with me.  Sending you much love.

With warmth & lovingkindness,


P.S. Please share this post and these resources with every mama you know! And are you signed up for my newsletter yet? Click here to get the personal insights that I only share in email.

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6 Steps to Bring Peace to the Table this Holiday
November 19, 2014


When I was a little girl, my Thanksgiving was characterized by great food and big arguments. After the meal was done, the adults would sit around the table and the generations would go at it. Sometimes it was entertaining. Mostly, I felt uncomfortable and left the room.

When families get together, we bring lots of baggage with us. We bring old habits. We bring our stories and expectations for the other people. We bring defensiveness.

It can be a stressful time to say the least.

But it doesn’t have to be. We have enormous power to change the dynamic. We can participate in the status quo or we can become part of the change.


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The belief that keeps you from giving your best (and you may not even know it!)
November 12, 2014


My friend Sarah was transformed by motherhood. Suddenly she had a new priority. Her babe was the most important person in the world to her. Of course. Many of us feel this radical shift in priorities.

She breastfed and made her own sling. She banished chemical cleaners from her cupboards. She made sure that she was always available. All of her time and energy was focused on her daughter.

Halfway into that first year she didn’t feel so rosy. She wouldn’t get around to a shower until 3pm. She wouldn’t let her husband get up at night to change the baby. She would leave her daughter with anyone. So Sarah wasn’t doing anything for herself.


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015: Yoga for mindfulness, awareness and balancing out a stressful life ~ Adam Marcus {YSP Podcast}
November 8, 2014

I’m so happy to share this episode with Adam Marcus. He is a dear friend and colleague. We share a passion for integrating the teachings of mindfulness into a physical yoga practice. And he and his father traveled with me to NYC to have a day of mindfulness with Thich Nhat Hahn.

<<< Click here or on the image below to listen! >>>



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The 1 thing that worked
November 5, 2014


My dad sat down on my bed and rubbed my back. I had been crying and crying. At 10 years old, this wasn’t new.

He said to me, “This is what it’s like having an artist’s temperament. You’ll always have this.”

I was consoled.

And I was sad for my bleak future. I was going to keep coming around to this? It seemed like a hard price to pay.

I accepted his truth. For most of my life, he was right. I felt things intensely. My highs were high and my lows were really low. I rode a roller-coaster.


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